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Dogon and Friends

Read "Dogon and Friends" reviewed by Patrick Burnette

The boys look at three recent releases including a vocal-focused celebration of Canada, a two-hander by composers of children's television soundtracks and a Swedish flutist upset with the political tides of the last few years. After a spirited, if dispiriting, discussion of jazz as “protest music" propers get paid to a pivotal recording of avant-funk-folk jazz by a co-founder of the World Saxophone Quartet. Finally, Brad Mehldau's flirtation with Bach gets a look-in during a very high-brow pop-matters segment.

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Julius Hemphill / Peter Kowald: Live at Kassiopeia

Read "Julius Hemphill / Peter Kowald: Live at Kassiopeia" reviewed by John Sharpe

Julius Hemphill / Peter KowaldLive at KassiopeiaNo Business Records2011 Out of the blue comes this double disc set featuring two distinguished alumni, both sadly now departed, of two parallel streams of musical pioneering. German bassist Peter Kowald was one of the authors of European free improvisation. Though initially in the shadows of his more assertive compatriots, saxophonist Peter Brotzmann and pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach, he came into his own through giving full ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Julius Hemphill: Dogon A.D.

Read "Dogon A.D." reviewed by Troy Collins

Dogon A.D. has long been revered as a classic among jazz connoisseurs; Julius Hemphill's relatively obscure but highly influential debut is widely considered the missing link between the avant-garde and populist forms such as blues, funk and soul. The 1972 recording session for this historic masterpiece originally produced four unique compositions, but Hemphill only issued three on his Mbari Records imprint due to time constraints. Arista/Freedom Records eventually bought the master tapes, using the fourth cut, “The Hard Blues," as ...

ALBUM REVIEW

The Julius Hemphill Sextet: The Hard Blues

Read "The Hard Blues" reviewed by Germein Linares

The Julius Hemphill Sextet celebrates its namesake on The Hard Blues, a funky and groovy outing by this all-saxophone group. Released by one of the more ambitious labels currently on the jazz scene, Portugal-based Clean Feed, the album features thirteen of the late saxophonist's memorable compositions. As with the World Saxophone Quartet, drum and bass are missing, leaving the generation of rhythm and its infectious byproducts to the group's interactions. They achieve a unique counterpoint and call-and-response cadence that surprises ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Julius Hemphill: One Atmosphere

Read "One Atmosphere" reviewed by Jeff Stockton

The late Julius Hemphill is pictured on the front of One Atmosphere nattily dressed and looking like someone you might meet at the crossroads, but he's holding sheet music. It's this combination of blues roots and classical formalism that was his stock and trade, both qualities represented to wonderful effect on this CD of rarely heard compositions.The title track, composed in 1992, is the most overtly classical. Ursula Oppens' piano mimics the sharp, vibrato-free Pacifica String Quartet as ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Julius Hemphill: Blue Boye

Read "Blue Boye" reviewed by Mike Neely

Julius Hemphill was the original leader of the World Saxophone Quartet (WSQ). He is also remembered for his extraordinary recordings with his own sextet, and for his work with the cellist Abdul Wadud to mention only some of his accomplishments. Hemphill died of diabetes in 1995.

Screwgun Records, a small label operated by the saxophonist Tim Berne, has recently released an early recording (1977) of Hemphill's entitled: “Blue Boye." This is a 2CD set of solo, and layered solo work, ...


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